The winners of the prestigious Dairy Industry Woman of the Year Award were announced at the fourth annual Women in Dairy Conference on Wednesday 19 September. This year two winners were chosen to give equal recognition to those working to connect, share and inspire within the Dairy industry at both a national and regional level.
Women in Dairy patron Di Wastenage said all it had been a privilege to read all of the inspiring nominations. “The conference and awards are our opportunity to showcase the diverse roles, strengths and talents within our sector and I have no doubt that our industry is in safe hands!”
All six finalists were recognised for their wide ranging skills and talents, however two were singled out as the worthy recipients of this year’s awards.
The Dairy Industry Woman of the Year Regional Award was presented to Ceri Cryer, a farmer and award winning cheesemaker from Wiltshire. She has established a business selling premium dairy products under the Brinkworth Dairy brand to local markets and the London Farmers Markets. When she is not processing milk she is communicating through local and national tv, radio and social media her passion for the dairy industry.
Ceri said: “I really plan to do my best to live up to this award – I have lots of energy and enthusiasm”.
The Dairy Industry Woman of the Year National Award was presented to Jeanette Prince, an Organic Dairy Farmer from Staffordshire. She was a founding member of the Staffordshire Women’s Farming Union and also Vice President of the Staffordshire YFC. A natural communicator, Jeanette continues to positively promote the industry, sharing her knowledge and experiences whilst inspiring others into the industry.
Jeannette said: “I was very surprised to learn that I had been nominated, let alone be selected as a finalist. I am thrilled to have won. Many work hard for our industry, so I am honoured to have received this award.”
The award was sponsored by HSBC UK, also principal sponsor of the conference. Denise Llewellyn, Agriculture Relationship Manager at HSBC UK presented the trophies, saying what an honour it was to support an award that recognises the fantastic contribution made by women in the dairy sector.
The largest Women in Dairy conference yet, over 140 delegates welcomed a wide variety of speakers talking under the theme of ‘Breaking Barriers’.
Key messages focused on opportunities and challenges the industry will face through Brexit, the importance of mentoring and networking, achieving career goals, how smart people take biosecurity seriously and how mindfulness can reduce stress and increase focus.
Delivered by a first class line up including NFU’s Minette Batters, colleagues from AB Agri, Farmer and Farmer’s Weekly columnist Liz Haines, Helen Rogers from Friars Moor Vets with Ailsa Milnes from Boehringer Ingelheim and Holly Beckett from Focussed Farmers, delegates left challenged, inspired and with tangible ideas they can implement back in their own lives and businesses.